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The Dreamers (2003)

NC-17  |   |  Drama, Romance  |  20 February 2004 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 74,636 users   Metascore: 62/100
Reviews: 248 user | 192 critic | 40 from Metacritic.com

A young American studying in Paris in 1968 strikes up a friendship with a French brother and sister. Set against the background of the '68 Paris student riots.


(screenplay), (based on the novel)
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9 nominations. See more awards »



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Complete credited cast:
Robin Renucci ...
Jean-Pierre Kalfon ...
Himself (as Jean-Paul Leaud)
Florian Cadiou ...
Pierre Hancisse ...
First Buff
Valentin Merlet ...
Second Buff
Lola Peploe ...
The Usherette
Ingy Fillion ...
Theo's Girlfriend


Paris, spring 1968. While most students take the lead in the May 'revolution', a French poet's twin son Theo and daughter Isabelle enjoy the good life in his grand Paris home. As film buffs they meet and 'adopt' modest, conservatively educated Californian student Matthew. With their parents away for a month, they drag him into an orgy of indulgence of all senses, losing all of his and the last of their innocence. A sexual threesome shakes their rapport, yet only the outside reality will break it up. Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated NC-17 for explicit sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




| |



Release Date:

20 February 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Innocents  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

£117,181 (UK) (6 February 2004)


$83,175 (Brazil) (10 December 2004)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (R-rated)

Sound Mix:


(archive footage)|

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


First film since Orgazmo (1997) that was released theatrically in the US with a NC-17 rating. Even with its NC-17 rating, major theater circuits like Regal and AMC agreed to show this film. See more »


Early in the film, Matthew hides a stolen photograph of Isabelle in his underpants to prevent his hosts from seeing him with it. Later, he loses a contest with Isabelle and is forced by her to strip and the photograph is still inexplicably in his underwear, even though several days have passed and he is wearing completely different clothes. See more »


[first lines]
Matthew: The first time I saw a movie at the cinématèque française I thought, "Only the French... only the French would house a cinema inside a palace."
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Crazy Credits

The word "events" is misspelled in the sentence stating "The wevents, characters and firms depicted in this photoplay are fictitious." See more »


Features Scarface (1932) See more »


Music from Sam Fuller's 'Shock Corridor'
Written by Paul Dunlap
Published by Amphion Music
Courtesy of Ben Barry & Associates, Inc/Betafilm (Kirch Group)
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

From Sexual Hedonism To Political Activism
4 March 2005 | by (Milwaukee, Wisconsin) – See all my reviews

THE DREAMERS (3 outta 5 stars) Interesting project by the renowned director Bernardo Bertolucci... dealing with the events of 1968 in France... a time of great social upheaval, as rioting students took to the streets to shut down the French government. The main characters are a young American student who has come to France to study film... and a very unconventional brother and sister who recruit him to their offbeat lifestyle. All three are obsessed by film (as many young people were in 1968... the glory days of the avant garde)... and also with the concept of breaking rules and societal taboos. With their parents away for the month and the flat to themselves, bets are made on film trivia and the penalties for not identifying a particular moment from a particular film become more and more shocking. Only leaving their home to watch films, the trio are basically oblivious to the growing trouble in the streets... until finally they can sit passively no more. Very intriguing concept and the acting is fine... but ultimately I thought the conclusion fell a little flat... the transition from sexual hedonism to political activism didn't really work for me... it all seemed a little abrupt and could have been explored a little deeper. Worth watching and discussing though.

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Message Boards

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Dumb question: Why is he always peeing in the sink? Loe_307
What I learned from The Dreamers.... daloxrr303
Is there actual sex? SporteGrl
Michael Pitt=Poor Man's Leonardo DiCaprio alixitis
Michael Pitt was great as Matthew. Glad it ended up to be him. adiv23
What was psychologically wrong with Isabella? oh-my-mcfly
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